Answers about Medications and other Exposures during Pregnancy and Breastfeeding
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MotherToBaby Utah (also known as the Pregnancy Risk Line), an affiliate of the Organization of Teratology Information Specialists (OTIS), is dedicated to providing evidence-based information to mothers, health care professionals, and the general public about medications and other exposures during pregnancy and while breastfeeding. We are adopting the MotherToBaby branding to help families and professionals find us easier and better understand our service. Like us on Facebook and Follow us on Twitter.
Cytomegalovirus (CMV) in pregnancy can cause permanent hearing loss and developmental disabilities in children. Read the documents to see who is at risk and how to protect your unborn baby. For more information, please visit the CMV Public Health Initiative page.
The Pregnancy Risk Line provides valuable information to women who are pregnant, considering becoming pregnant, or breastfeeding, and to their healthcare providers.
What is the Pregnancy Risk Line's purpose?
This free, private, and easy-to-use telephone information service answers questions about medicines, drugs, chemicals, and other environmental exposures that can potentially harm an embryo, fetus, or infant. The Pregnancy Risk Line also answers questions about the flu and flu vaccines. For a brief video describing the Pregnancy Risk Line, see the news story on KUTV or watch our 5-minute video in .wmv format or .mpg format.
The purpose of the Pregnancy Risk Line is to offer accurate, timely, and confidential information that will help you avoid problems caused by:
Medications you have recently taken or are currently taking
Chemicals you may be exposed to
Other potentially dangerous products or exposures
Who will I talk to?
You will talk to a staff member knowledgeable about medicines, chemicals and other exposures that can cause pregnancy problems or birth defects. The Pregnancy RiskLine staff also advises women and their health care providers about the effects of exposures on the breastfed baby and the possible impact on breast milk production.
What questions will the Pregnancy Risk Line ask me when I call?
The staff will ask some questions to understand your situation:
Are you pregnant or breastfeeding?
How many weeks pregnant are you? or How old is your baby?
What medications, substances, or exposures do you want to know about?
What other health issues do you have? or Do you have high blood pressure?
If you are asking about a medication, please have it with you and be ready to spell the name of the medication.
The Pregnancy Risk Line tries to get its phone number to as many women as possible and we want to know what ways work the best. So, you will be asked two questions near the end of the call.
What is your zip code (or state if you are calling from outside of Utah)?
Where did you get our number? or How did you hear about us?
Studies: Vaccines, asthma, and more
During the flu season and for help with several research studies, the Pregnancy Risk Line may also ask if you have received vaccinations before or during your current pregnancy or if you have a diagnosis of asthma. Your help with these research studies provides answers for other women in the future.
Is the Pregnancy Risk Line a reputable organization?
The Pregnancy Risk Line is a joint effort of the Utah Department of Health and the University of Utah Health Sciences Center. The Risk Line has been providing pregnancy information and education to women, families, and health care providers for more than twenty-five years. Teratology specialists and university faculty from the schools of pharmacy and medicine review the latest research to give callers the most accurate information about exposures during pregnancy and breastfeeding.
Research participants needed.
MotherToBaby UT and other MotherToBaby affiliates provide information about exposures during pregnancy based on research with pregnant women. These research studies need participants who have conditions (like arthritis) or use medications (like vaccines).We need your help to find the answers to some of your questions. Even if you are not taking one of the medications being researched, you can help by being a "control" (women without the condition or who are not using the medication). To help, call MotherToBaby or complete the online participation form. These research studies help phone counselors give callers the newest and most accurate information. Thank you for your help!
What else does the Pregnancy Risk Line do?
In partnership with other agencies and organizations, the Pregnancy Risk Line educates the public and professionals about exposures that can cause birth defects (teratogens). One known teratogen is alcohol. As part of FASD Awareness Day on September 9th (9/9/2010), the Pregnancy Risk Line and the Utah Fetal Alcohol Coalition began a year-long campaign to encourage women to pledge to be alcohol-free during their 9 months of pregnancy. Even if you are not currently pregnant, you can help by spreading the word that pregnant women should not drink alcohol. You can make a difference and help prevent birth defects and life-long disabilities caused by drinking alcohol during pregnancy.
When can I call the Pregnancy Risk Line?
The staff at the Pregnancy Risk Line can take your call Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
If the phone lines are busy during business hours, you may leave a message and we will call you back that day. If you call during our usual Seminars on Wednesday from 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m., please leave a message and we will return your calls after the meeting.
MotherToBaby Utah, outside of Salt Lake area, call toll-free 1-800-822-2229
MotherToBaby Utah, in Salt Lake area, call 801-328-2229
To connect to the local MotherToBaby service that covers your state (telephone area code) or Canada, please call tool-free 1-866-626-6847.